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Programming: Where to start?

Posted by Logix [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 06:03:25 AM

I just wanted to know what Language is best for an absolute beginner to programming. I know that it depends on what you want to do etc but in general, what is it best to begin with?


Posted by Mobby_dick [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 06:47:23 AM

Yes, it depends on what you want. If you want programm for WIN32 you should try VBasic or Delphi. If you want to write for dos/win you should try qbasic/Tpascal. For linux you should try C#.

Posted by ItinitI [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 09:10:12 AM

Yeah, it depends... I would recomend Ruby...it is easy to use, and has clear simple syntax.


Posted by Psion [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 02:00:40 PM

I think it's cool how Mobby_dick recommended none of the languages we do in http://www.hprog.org/fhp/LearnProgramming . =D Maybe he could explain his reasons for recommeding them after reading ours?

Posted by Mobby_dick [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 03:03:46 PM

heh... It's hard to explain =) They taught me QB when I was in primary school. Then I tried TP and VB. And it is till today...;)

Just try: http://www.pc-developer.com/

Posted by Psion [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 03:31:29 PM

Well, if it's hard to explain, then I think that even the modest reasons given on our page linked above should be enough to convince someone to prefer our advice. =)

Posted by rafik_rezzik [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 04:42:12 PM

I think that C is the best. I agree it may seem hard to the beginner, but I started with it. To me it seems to make a whole lot more sense than all the other languages out there. If also think that Python is pretty good. But I use Linux, and this might be different if I used Windows.

Posted by Psion [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 05:38:33 PM

Well, I suggest you read the discussion of why someone should NOT choose to learn C on the LearnProgramming page I linked, and then come talk to us on IRC if you don't agree with the reasons. :P

Posted by stevo33 [send private reply] at May 25, 2003, 11:54:40 PM

so i take it QB is the best to start out? i've heard it alot..

Posted by buzgub [send private reply] at May 26, 2003, 12:27:53 AM

http://www.hprog.org/fhp/LearnProgramming (as Psion already said, although you ignored him as I imagine you will now ignore me) suggests some good starting languages and why they're good languages to start with.

My personal reccomendation is python, which runs on most common systems (Windows, Mac, Unix)

Posted by Mobby_dick [send private reply] at May 26, 2003, 12:53:45 PM

Yeah mython beats most of them.

Posted by CodeX [send private reply] at May 27, 2003, 03:18:08 PM

I would recommend a language called euphoria. It's interpereted, so, you're rather safe at the beginner level with it. It's easy to learn, very readable, and still offers all the power of C (perhaps not all the speed). I started out with it and use it to this day. You CAN do anything in euphoria that you can do in C. Custom structures and data types may be a little bit iffy, but that's all i can really think of. It comes with a nice standard set of libraries and if you check out the user contributions, you will find libs for just about anything from game engines, to crypto gear, to database engines, to graphic engines. Euphoria also allows you to get down into the machine level when you're ready for that. You can optimize routines by writing them in assembly, then allocating space for the code and calling your handle to that memory area as if it were a routine ID. The site is www.rapideuphoria.com .

Remember, it's interpereted, which means no recompiles between tests, and also means that you can trace what goes on with greater ease. Euphoria has a built in trace utility (300-statement max for pub domain) and has a debug utility that will dump all your program data to a file when it crashes. You can really get into the nitty-gritty with Euphoria and yet it gives you enough flexibility to completely ignore your system's architecture. Give it a look, i found it very easy to learn. Check on the site for the Beginner's Guide To Euphoria by David Alan Gay.

Posted by ItinitI [send private reply] at May 27, 2003, 08:44:52 PM

Actually, there is a Euphoria compiler to generate .EXE files, howbeit it is like 40$USD [I dunno if it is just byte-compiler or fully though =/ ].

Posted by CodeX [send private reply] at May 28, 2003, 07:20:26 AM

It basically tacks on the entire interpereter to the best of my knowledge which means a program whose source code is 12k will end up having a 182k executable. And yeah, it is kindof expensive. BUT, if you write a lot of useful stuff for the public domain, you can gain micro-economy money, as registered users see fit, which you can put towards the registered version or the Euphoria interpereter source code. Right now, they're still finishiing the Euphoria->C translator. Once it's in C, you can compile it. But, again, without the registered version, it'll have a little euphoria plug that pops up at the beginning of the program.

Posted by stilldo [send private reply] at May 30, 2003, 01:21:24 AM

I don't know if anyones suggested this yet (too lazy to read all those posts...), but i would highly recommend Python. Its OS-Independant, very powerful, and unbelievably easy to learn. check out http://www.python.org

Ummmm... once youve got the hand of python, i would suggest java or, if you are REALLY confident, C. but thats a bit of a hard one for a n00b. try easy ones first, no matter how confident you are.

Posted by stilldo [send private reply] at May 30, 2003, 01:23:35 AM

oh, and for general information, my brother taught himself C just by looking at source code, on a mac classic II (obsolete before it hit the shelves), so it is possible for a beginner to learn C. but then, this was something like C 1.0, so it wasnt very complex yet, and he was 15 with WAY too much time on his hands.

so there you go...

Posted by CViper [send private reply] at May 30, 2003, 05:02:44 AM

I started with C when I was about 14 or 15. I read a book about it (Learn C on the Macintosh or something like that) before I even knew how to speak english =)

It's definitly possible, assuming you're interested and have some time. Compared to VB or Java C/C++ might seem somewhat boring, because all your first applications will probably be console-applications.

Posted by CodeX [send private reply] at May 30, 2003, 01:45:39 PM

I like console apps. The little black box is my friend. :)

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